New competition field for Rutland Robotics

Published: Nov. 19, 2023 at 11:25 AM EST
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RUTLAND, Vt. (WCAX) - A Rutland makerspace is getting a makeover.

The MINT, a shared workshop off Route 7, is the first place in the state to have a robotics playing field. The recently finished space will mostly be used by students in an after-school program called Rutland Area Robotics. Students are challenged to build and code a robot to play a surprise game. They then compete against other student-made robots in different New England states.

Now, Vermont will host regional schools, where students can collaborate on their creations.

“These are the skills kids need. They need to be able to work their hands. They like and enjoy and are engaged by that kind of activity. The founder of ‘First’ will tell you we’re not using the kids to build robots, we’re building kids using robots. The kids are learning how to work as a team,” said Dan Roswell, the president of Rutland Area Robotics.

In January, the Rutland robotics team will get their new game assigned for 2024. This year, they’ll get to design their washing machine-sized robots alongside teams like Stowe, St. Johnsbury, Burlington and Sharon, on the state’s only First Robotics Competition field.